Automated Driving Safety White Paper
For more than 100 years, automobiles have played a crucial role in enabling and expanding personal access to jobs, shopping, recreation, schools and our quality of life. It’s hard to overestimate the role of automobiles in shaping our cities and modern society.
And up until recently, these vehicles have been completely dependent upon human drivers for sensing road conditions and traffic controls and deciding vehicle direction and speed. Now, increasingly capable electronic sensors and sophisticated algorithms are assisting drivers in controlling their vehicles and are even allowing for fully automated driving under certain driving conditions. Indeed, automated driving systems (ADS) offer the potential for more convenient, safer and efficient transportation for the future of mobility.
Most automakers, as well as many tech companies and startup ventures, are heavily investing in the development of autonomous vehicles and enabling systems and technologies. Many governments at both the national and local levels are actively supporting these efforts as well. Ensuring the safe deployment of ADS-equipped vehicles is perhaps the greatest challenge faced by the automotive industry and regulators alike. While it may seem that ADS all but assures safety — ADS are not subject to distraction, fatigue and other human frailties — the reality is far more complex. This white paper considers a holistic approach to safety and introduces a graphic as a summary of important ADS safety elements.